|Andy Murray pulled out of the Rogers Cup Toronto Masters on Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012. (Mike Cassese/Reuters)
TORONTO - That huge groan you heard from the north end of the city likely started in the Tennis Canada offices at the Rexall Centre.
Andy Murray, the second seed and one of the big-name draws still left in the Rogers Cup, withdrew Thursday afternoon, just hours before he was to play Milos Raonic on Centre Court, due to a left knee injury. It was the most hyped showdown of the tournament and left organizers without a marquee evening match.
"I think I wanted to come (to Toronto) and try to play, and actually played pretty decent for a first match on the hard courts," Murray said. "I mean, indeally I would be feeling perfect but I don't think that was ever going to be the situation after how the Olympics finished. Obviously (I) picked up a niggle and would rather not have done that.
"I don't want to go full out and possibly do more damage. That was why I decided not to play."
The withdrawal of Murray, who won Olympic gold last week in London, allowed Raonic -- the hometown hero and big-serving wunderkind -- to move on to the quarterfinals of the Rogers Cup, the first time he's advanced that far in the ATP Masters 1000 series event.
Although Raonic handed Murray a win the same way in Miami earlier this year, it wasn't how he wanted things to go down here.
"Obviously, (the match) was something I was really looking forward to," he said. "It's sort of like an unpleasant thing but at the same time it's a good thing. It's my first quarterfinal in a Masters (1000) and to be at home is pretty special. I guess there is a give and take with it."
The remainder of the third-round singles matches and the debut of Canadian Daniel Nestor and Max Mirnyi in doubles were put on hold by rain Thursday. No word on if, or when, play will resume.